Double Attack blackjack

Double attack blackjack is a game played in about a half-dozen Atlantic City casinos and sometimes at the El Cortez in Las Vegas. Players won’t find the game as often in online casinos as they will Double Exposure, Pontoon, Super Fun 21, or Spanish 21. Due to the wild rules and a novel side bet, the game is gaining in popularity and is a likely candidate for Internet game designers to add to their software packages.

You can try a range of popular blackjack variants for free or real money bets at All Slots Casino.

Deck rules

Double-attack blackjack is played as a variant of Spanish 21, which is quite similar to Pontoon. The Spanish deck is used, meaning the usual 52-card deck has the four 10’s eliminated. This raises the house edge, which allows the casino to offer all sorts of strange rules to make the game a lot more fun. The aforementioned side bet involves dealer busts, so suspense is added to the game when you compare it with a dealer-dependent rules set like perfect pairs.

Most of the time, casinos use 8 decks to build their multi-deck. Having 8 decks gives you many ways for the dealer to complete the suited 888 bust-out which is so important to the side betting. I’ll discuss later how the side bet works, but I want to discuss the main wager for the moment.

Dealer rules

One rule to your advantage requires the dealer to stand on a soft 17. The dealer peeks for blackjack, though you’ll learn in a minute this doesn’t always protect you from losing a double down wager.

Player rules

Several of the rule variations in this game centre on the ability of the gambler to double down. In contrast to traditional game play, the first card dealt is the dealer up card. After this card is dealt, players decide whether to raise their bet. The size of the second wager can be as high as the original bet, but can be smaller. This is the wager which gives the game its “Double Attack” name.

Double-Attack splitting rules

If the player splits later in the hand, they must match the double-attack wager from earlier. When choosing to double, the player can wager the sum of the original bet and the double-attack bet. In this case, if the player decides to surrender, then the player will be refunded half the original bet and half the doubling bet.

Double or surrender

Players have more play options in this game, or at least more times when they can use those options. At any time, punters can either double their wager or surrender. Either of these is possible after splitting. No redoubling is allowed, so all hands can only be doubled once. Surrendering after the split can be done hand-by-hand.

Splitting aces

When you split aces, you’ll only be able to receive one card. This is a common rule in casino twenty-one, but one which limits the ways you can beat the house.

Aces cannot be resplit. Other pairs can be resplit, though the number of times differs between establishments. Some offer a resplit up to 3 hands, while others allow the splitting to continue up to four hands.

Even-money blackjack

One of the big drawbacks of the game is the even-money payout for a blackjack. Getting 1:1 is a scenario a lot of gambling writers have warned players about in classic 21 games. In this version, it’s simply one of the rules you have to suffer in order to play by these fun rules.

5:2 Insurance

The insurance bet in double attack blackjack pays 5 to 2. Since this is a significant upgrade over the 2:1 insurance most games offer, this gives the illusion that a potential new gaming possibility is open to you. In truth, the payout isn’t enough to entice players using a basic strategy chart tailored to this game. The house edge on the insurance bet on this variant is 12.27%. Card counters would find times when it would be to their advantage to use insurance, but inexperienced gamblers should never take insurance, even when it pays 5:2.

Main bet house edge

The house edge on the main bet in double-attack 21 is 0.62%. The expected return of 99.38% makes this a good bet when compared against most other games in the casino. At the same time, you’ll find a lower house edge on classic blackjack, Spanish 21, super fun 21, and pontoon. The many fun rules make this a good version of twenty-one when you want to learn a new game or enjoy something different, but gamblers who consider their bankroll first and foremost won’t make this their favourite version of twenty-one.

Bust It side bet

The side bet in this game has a much worse house edge. That being said, the “Bust It” side bet is one of the best-designed I’ve seen in a while, if you’re just interested in building suspense in a hand. You get paid special pots when the dealer busts. Specific types of busts pay higher amounts, with the suited 888 the best payout in the game. When the dealer receives a suited 888 bust, this pays 200x the side bet. When the dealer gets an 888 bust of the same colour, this pays 50x the original side wager.

Besides these two uncommon hands, the player wins money when the dealer loses with a certain card. When the dealer busts after a 6 is drawn, this pays 15x the side bet. If the dealer busts with a 7, this pays 10:1. A bust-out with an 8 pays out 8 to 1, while a bust with ah 9 pays at 6 to 1. Finally a dealer bust with a 10 pays at 3 to 1. These various payouts offer excitement, but unfortunately, the house edge on the side bet is 8.01%. That’s comparable with your average poker machine house edge, which isn’t good.

Online Double Attack blackjack

Real money gamblers can find this game at their favourite online sites, though it’s not nearly as common as many other games. Microgaming includes double-attack, though you won’t find it advertised as often as other games. If your favourite casino doesn’t offer it, continue to ask and management may eventually add the option. If it’s a Microgaming casino, the software already exists.

Try Microgaming blackjack variants at leading 21 sites like All Slots Casino and Royal Vegas Casino.

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